Fall 2021

Visiting Belle

   Recently, AmeriCorps member Dennis Strom, serving at The Craik-Patton House, was looking for a project for one of his Civic Service requirements. It had been suggested that The Old Stone House, also known as the Samuel Shrewsbury House in Belle, WV, could benefit from some volunteer hours. The historic house is significant because Rev. James Craik's wife, Juliet Shrewsbury, was born there in 1809 at about the same time the house was being built, situated along the Kanawha River, in the historic salt industry area.

Samuel Shrewsbury House.jpg

   Craik-Patton's Executive Director Nathan Jones contacted Belle Historical Restoration Society's director Jeanine Adkins and set an appointment for a visit. Mrs. Adkins, in period-correct attire met Nathan, Dennis, and his wife Kelly, and was kind enough to give a personal guided tour. They discussed the Shrewsbury-Craik connection and the history of the salt-making industry. Mrs. Adkins also related her own personal connection to the Reynolds family, also important in Belle's early history. And although she appreciated the suggestion of volunteerism, she declined the offer.

   One interesting item among the house's collection is a photograph of Daniel Boone's cave that overlooked the Kanawha River. Dennis has been doing some research into Boone's time in the Kanawha Valley and this photo is not one that has ever appeared in any known historical records. It has been said that the cave fell victim to the construction of Interstate 64 in the 1970s, but others claim that it is still there, located in the ideal spot in the bend of the river where Boone could see both down and upriver. Mrs. Adkins has no idea why it is among the
Shrewsbury House's collection.

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Copy of Photography of the 19th century.
Photography of the 19th Century Title Sl
Photography of the 19th Century Title Sl